Agritech & Foodtech Market in Japan: Key Research Findings 2023
Domestic Agritech & Foodtech Market Size (as a Total of Smart Agriculture, Plant Factory, Next-generation Aquaculture, and Alternative Protein) is Estimated at 71,847 Million Yen for FY2021
Yano Research Institute (the President, Takashi Mizukoshi) has conducted a survey on the market of Agritech and Foodtech (smart agriculture, plant factory, next-generation aquaculture, and alternative protein) in and outside of Japan, and found out the current market status, the trends of market players, and future perspectives. This press release presents the domestic market size and shares a part of our market analysis.
Agritech and Foodtech market size in Japan (as a total of markets of smart agriculture, plant factory, next-generation aquaculture, and alternative protein) is estimated at 71,847 million yen for FY2021, based on the shipment value at manufacturers.
Decline in numbers and aging of agricultural workers are pressing issues in Japan. According to the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries (MAFF), the population working in agriculture (people of age 15 or older of households that are primarily engaged in agriculture) has waned to 1.226 million in 2022 from 1.757 million in 2015.
The average age of agricultural workers has increased from 67.1 to 68.4 years from 2015 to 2022. With more elderly workers retiring hereafter, production of agricultural produce will decrease and thus food self-sufficiency rate drops. This is seen as a threatening situation for Japan from the perspective of food security.
As per fishing industry, aquaculture is expanding globally. Coupled with the change in food culture, domestic demand has been increasing for “stable” marine products – products that are stable in quality, stable in quantity, stable in price, and supplied stably on time. Nevertheless, the cost of fishmeal has become an issue for domestic fish farms, because a majority of fishmeal materials in Japan are imports. Against a backdrop of a rise in global demand, the price of imported fishmeal is soaring.
The demand for meat is growing along with the increase of world population. However, due to the environmental impact of livestock farming, such as livestock emissions that cause greenhouse effect and overuse of livestock feeds and water, there is a risk that production of traditional animal-based meat may not be enough to meet the demand for meat in the future. Under the circumstances, plant-based meat made with beans and vegetables, and cultured meat grown by cultivating animal cells in labs, are drawing attention. Moreover, from the perspective of sustainable supply-demand balance of seafood, research and development is advancing for alternative seafood, including plant-based seafood made of beans, wheat, or seaweed, and cultured seafood that are lab-grown using cells of fish and crustaceans.
Impacted by the climate changes and other changes in food production environment, agricultural sectors (agriculture, fishing, and livestock farming) are turning from traditional production methods to new methods using Agritech and Foodtech, such as smart agriculture, plant factory, next-generation aquaculture, and alternative protein.
A Range of Alternative Protein Products Widens
The global market of alternative protein is brisk with the introduction of new categories in addition to the plant-based meat, such as alternative seafoods and alternative eggs.
Hamburgers using plant-based Foie Gras, plant-based tuna in the can, and plant-based fish fries are put on the market in Japan as well. Plant-based eggs are being sold as commercial product, as well as dishes at restaurants.
Plant-based alternative protein products generally effective in reducing environmental impacts and ensuring animal welfare. Driven by the increasing awareness of environmental footprint associated with meat consumption and the growing preference for organic products and alternative protein sources, market players are gaining momentum in developing new products that are better in taste and nutritious value. People may enjoy meals that are well-balanced, richer in nutritious value by combining conventional meat products and plant-based alternative proteins in their diet.
The Agritech & Foodtech market (as a total of market of smart agriculture, plant factory, next-generation aquaculture, and alternative protein) is forecasted to reach 211,277 million yen by FY2030, based on the shipment value at manufacturers.
With advancements of smart agriculture, plant factory, next-generation aquaculture and alternative protein, framework of food production may be reimagined hereafter. By stabilization of food supplies (in terms of volume/quantity, quality, and price) and stimulating innovation among legacy industries to create high value-added products, the new technologies are expected to enhance the food market and contribute to both businesses (food manufacturers, retailers, and food services) and consumers.
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